MySpace bought for $35m
Specific Media buys networking site for bargain price, Justin Timberlake takes ownership role
MySpace has been purchased from News Corporation by Specific Media, a digital media company, for $35 million in cash and stock.
“Myspace is a recognised leader that has pioneered the social media space. The company has transformed the ways in which audiences discover, consume and engage with content online,” said Tim Vanderhook, Specific Media CEO. “There are many synergies between our companies as we are both focused on enhancing digital media experiences by fueling connections with relevance and interest. We look forward to combining our platforms to drive the next generation of digital innovation.”
News Corp purchased MySpace for $580 million in 2005 and plans to retain a small stake in the company through a minority equity stake in Specific Media. The media corporation had hoped to raise at least 100 million from the sale of the site.
As part of the deal between the two companies, artist Justin Timberlake will take an ownership stake and play a large role in developing the creative direction and strategy for the company, according to a press release from Specific Media.
Specific Media and Timberlake plan to unveil their vision for the site in a press conference later this summer.
“There’s a need for a place where fans can go to interact with their favorite entertainers, listen to music, watch videos, share and discover cool stuff and just connect. Myspace has the potential to be that place,” said Timberlake. “Art is inspired by people and vice versa, so there’s a natural social component to entertainment. I’m excited to help revitalise Myspace by using its social media platform to bring artists and fans together in one community.”
Part of Specific Media’s vision for the social networking site, is to develop it into the premiere digital destination for original shows, video content and music.
“We’re thrilled about the opportunity to rebuild and reinvigorate Myspace,” said Tim Vanderhook, CEO of Specific Media. “We look forward to partnering with someone as talented as Justin Timberlake, who will lead the business strategy with his creative ideas and vision for transforming Myspace. This is the next chapter of digital media, and we are excited to have a hand in writing the script."
Additional terms of the agreement are confidential and will not be disclosed, according to both MySpace and Specific media.
Specific Media is a global interactive media company, which was founded in 1999 by brothers Tim, Chris and Russell Vanderhook, Specific Media is currently headquartered in Irvine, CA and operates offices around the world.
Myspace, was once the premier online hangout for musicians, actors and their fans to interact, but the site reached the height of its popularity on 2008 with 76.3 million users, that number has since fallen to 35 million in May 2011, according to ComScore Digital Analytix.